It’s another New Music Friday, and a handful of new singles and one new album by Corey Voss, were released today. But, honestly, I have had “Rattle” on repeat while I write these devotions, wishing Elevation Worship would hurry up and release that track on Spotify so I could take it everywhere. But to give some other artists deserved love today, my man Danny Gokey released a radio version for a great track that fits into the main message of the Common Sense Reborn theme: “Love God, Love People.” It’s really that simple, and we need to get the world to understand that. It’s not about religion, it’s not about rules and wayward laws, it’s about loving God and loving people. If you need further explanation on how to do that, I explained it in detail in the book, Common Sense Reborn. Mr. Gokey explains his take on it in the song below.
10“You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? 11Very truly I tell you , we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. 12I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? 13No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven-the Son of Man. 14Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” (John 3:10-15)
Picking up where we left yesterday, I wanted to look at these verses, because, again, this is the conversation that precludes John 3:16. As many times as I have heard sermons taught about John 3:16 or reference that famous verse in their message, I don’t think I have ever heard anyone quote this paragraph which is uttered by Jesus just before John writes those famous words: “For God so loved the world…” Whenever I feel frustrated in our current culture and I can not fathom why people do not believe in God or Jesus, verses like this give me some hope and help keep my sanity. As we see here, Jesus points out to Nicodemus, despite Him telling the Jewish leaders who He is and testify of the miracles He can perform, the Jewish leaders do not accept Jesus’ truth. So if those looking for a savior, living in a time of oppression, if they could not believe Jesus was the “Son of Man” how can I expect anyone 2000 years after the fact to believe Jesus is their promised Messiah? That reality doesn’t keep me from doing my job and sharing my personal testimony, speaking of the love and grace of Jesus every chance I get and never giving up hope of turning just one more person to truly understand the power of Jesus. Never give up on your quest to spread the Gospel, and reclaim the sanity of this country and the world. As we see in the Book of John, Nicodemus goes from the confused but inquisitive teacher, to one the man with Joseph of Arimathea who prepares the body of Jesus for the tomb. Many scholars think that because Nicodemus prepared Jesus’ body for burial in the tomb, it shows Nicodemus’ commitment to Christ as the Savior. John’s recollection of the ceremony (John 19:39) is the last mention of Nicodemus. So there are no recorded writings of Jesus visiting Nicodemus after the Resurrection, but I can assume that Jesus did visit this important figure in the Jewish law to show him the final proof that Jesus was who He always said He was.
So if you ever get frustrated that unbelievers in your personal life are not moving toward Christ, continue to show them abounding compassion and love. Pray for them and wait for the day when Jesus or the Holy Spirit appears in their life, giving them an unexpected and unexplainable miracle. That will be the moment to accept them in with open arms to gently lead them to the foot of the Cross.
Reading plan: John 14
Deeper reading plan: 1 Chronicles 1, 2, 3, 4
Prayer and meditation: Pray for the sick, pray for the lost and their loved ones. Pray for redemption for this lost world. Pray for a reviving rattle to shake COVID off this planet. And continue to pray for all those in medical professions, grocery stores, supply chain operators, first responders, and the amazing teachers still doing all they can to teach the students they love so much.
Fitness challenge: 21 reps of each exercise 1-7, then repeat :
1. Standard push-up
2. Sit-up or crunches
3. Air squats
4. Hand-release push-up
5. Leg lifts
6. Lunges (7-each leg)
7. 4-count flutter kick